VIDEO: 14th Anniversary of Space Shuttle Columbia Disaster

By  //  February 1, 2017

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share on Delicious Digg This Stumble This

ABOVE VIDEO: Space Documentary 2015 Columbia Space Shuttle Disaster

(NASA) – At 8:59 am Eastern Time on February 1, 2003, Space Shuttle Columbia broke up during re-entry over the skies of east Texas killing the crew of STS-107.

They were returning from a 16 day science mission and were just 16 minutes from scheduled touchdown at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center.

A seven month long investigation into the accident revealed that a piece of light-weight insulating foam had punctured the Reinforced Carbon Carbon thermal shield on the left wing of Shuttle Columbia during launch on January 16.

The breach in the thermal protection system led to catastrophic failure of Columbia at approximately 200,000 feet altitude and a speed of Mach 18.

The crew, pictured above, included, from left to right, Mission Specialist David Brown, Commander Rick Husband, Mission Specialist Laurel Clark, Mission Specialist Kalpana Chawla, Mission Specialist Michael Anderson, Pilot William McCool, and Israeli Payload Specialist Ilan Ramon.